Sunday, 16 December 2018

Geeta Iyengar: The passing of a Yoga Giant

Geetaji passed away this morning in Pune at home. She was looking radiant and bright the last few days. She had concluded a mammoth 12 day programme, the BKS Iyengar Centennial Celebrations at Balewadi Sports complex. She liked to complete things and was up and about, meeting people till 7.30 the previous evening.

My first memories of Geeta Iyengar are of her glinting eyes. Magnificent orbs that noticed everything and missed nothing! Her voice had a baritone quality that made her students rise up above the routine of practice to higher highs and deeper depths in both Yog asanas and spiritual endeavours. Her presence would invoke a flurry of activity and a hush would descend on the hall. A hush of premonition. A hush of anticipation. And for the tardy, a hush of fear.

She could run a fiery mega class of a few thousand or tenderly adjust a student in therapy. Periamma was not just aunt but mother to not just her family but to thousands of students from the Iyengar Yoga community; old, middle aged, young and infirm! 

A worthy hand and an able successor to her father, Yogacharya BKS Iyengar, Geeta Iyengar leaves behind a huge legacy and a void that will be hard to fill for her students. In Abhijata Iyengar, the Iyengar Yoga community sees a worthy successor albeit with a heavy burden to carry forward their legacy to the future. 

Geeta Iyengar completed her teaching, her swan song, and tribute to Guruji BKS Iyengar
at the recently concluded BKS Iyengar Centennial programme where over 1200 students from 56 countries received insight, knowledge and even sometimes, a rebuke wrapped in the aphorisms of Patanjali.

Many will miss her and everyone will be sad but her crowning legacy lay in carrying Iyengar Yoga forward along with her distinguished brother and senior Iyengar Yoga teacher Prashantji. Her voice will remain the conscience of Yoga Sadhakas, who will find the blessing of spiritual honesty in her memory. 

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